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Happy new year everyone.

I thought i should share some of the illustrations from my guinea pig calendar.
I got tagged by :iconvanessasatone:
Rules: The 1st player of this "game" starts with the topic "6 Weird Habits/Things About Yourself" and people who get tagged need to write a journal about their 6 Weird Habits/Things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose the next 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don't forget to leave a comment that says "You are tagged" in their devPage comments and tell them to read yours..."

I'm going to do this, but I don't want to tag anyone. (fear of retribution?!?!?!?!)
Maybe i'll tag someone later when i can think of who i want to know these things about?!

1. I obsessively pull out my white hairs. I'm allergic to most hair dyes so i can't dye my hair. Actually probably 10% of my hair is actually white but you would never know it!! hahahaha

2. The tops of my pinkys (and actually every person down my father's lineage) has pinkies that grow inward (toward the ring finger) at about 10 degrees off. i think it's a genetic thing like blue eyes?!

3. i spent a whole week in december when final fantasy tactics came out and played the game beginning to end. I didn't eat anything more than potato chips and marshmellows and i didn't sleep more than 4 hours on any of those days. ( i lost 15 lbs in one week?!?) After that I basically gave up video games ^^;

4. i can pick locks, and i know how to hot wire a 1983 chrysler station wagon. (maybe that's two bits of info, but it's related to the fact the first car my family owned was ghetto as hell)

5. i understand 2 languages i can't speak.

6. uh damn i'm boring i can't think of anything.... i have a rib in my chest that grows outward instead of inward
i ditched painting my comics by computer.

i started watercoloring again, and frankly real mediums are the shit.
and i'm 3000x better with them than with painter.

plus they're wicked faster than computer.
seriously i put out 3 pages in watercolor in a day as opposed to one the comp.

muahahah. i got a new paintbrush too which is just awesome.

i'll scan them for you all when they're done.

I hope to have this done by the time spx rolls around but i'm not sure. we'll see =3
San Diego Con was nice! I got to see a lot of old faces and new ones at the same time.
Da Cloonan, Da Reeses and Da Satone were all my homies at the con. It was noice!
American Virgin is out. Get it all of you.
Y'all need to check out Wet Moon if you haven't yet. I got to talk to the artist for a bit, and it's worthwhile look.
Other things I can totally recommend is the Flight 3 book, which pumped up it's stature majorly since book 2.
I mean book 2 was schweet, but Flight 3 was totally like another level. (nice job you flight artists =3)
AND CLOUD BOY! I love this book. It's a children's book about making art. it's so nice. I <3 the artist.

I got my portfolio reviewed bu a lot of big and small name companies alike. And I came away with the same thing which is
1. I need to focus more on my illustration skills
2. I need to make a pitch, (i need a writer!) because thus far my work is respectable but not cohesive
3. All the stories I want to do for myself, I should self publish, because i'm not "mainstream" enough for big and small publishers alike.

Time get my rear in gear >_<
It's hot and i've been redesigning my site.
It's not even halfway finished, but it's nice to learn some actionscript.
It's hot and i've been redesigning my site.
It's not even halfway finished, but it's nice to learn some actionscript.
man it's hot. i need to escape to san diego.
This New Year looks more promising than the last.
I hope everyone is doing as well as I am.
My semester is ending tommorrow.

All my exams and stuff are over too. Yay! I means I can go back on working on my heart doctor story in full gear!
I just learned the coolest art vocab word in class.

周囲発行 (english pronounciation Shoo-EE-Ha-Koh)
It means Ambient Luminosity.
I had a substitute teacher in one of my inking classes last week, and the guy was kind of a theorist. In school, there's two kind of teachers, practical applications (like techiniques, how to draw, etc) and there's theory teachers (one that teach you how to think, what to observe, etc) i've found very few teachers (i'm not sure if i've even found any) that completely blend or have an equal mix of the two.

My usual inking teacher is a practical applications, he teaches what kind of brushes to use, what angles to hold your paper so the ink flows correctly, etc. A minimalist, he likes clean line work, and balancing of paper whites to ink.

This other guy is a theorist, he shows you what old school artist you can learn the most from. This one is a maximalist, he floods the paper with as much detail as you can while still retaining the image.

I realized from comparing the two teachers.
1. In inking drawing, or penciling,  I am a total minimalist. I like using as much paper as possible. I love utitilizing the whites and negative spaces as a form of control and movement. I find very few other artists that do this well to be honest. Most artists I'm in contact are the complete opposite, they're maximalize every unit of space (well, i will admit, nice flat blacks work as kind of heir own opposite negative space)

2. In pastels and oils, I am an utter maximalist and i lie to obliterate the paper, which is horrible, because that's not really the point of pastels, because you're supposed to utilize the color and texture of the paper. Man, even tho my pastel teacher told me I'm one of the best talents he's seen in a while, I don't understand why he doesn't annihilate me for not utilizing the paper. He's so good at that, and there was this other kid in class that was good about that as well and it kills me I don't have more control and judgement to do that. The only one i managed to do that at all with was the Kosui Juurota pic (Love Thunder Sama) but that's because i drew that from my head instead of observations. I just wish my pastel teacher had kicked my ass more about it.

3. Watercolors, it's the only medium where I have complete control over both negative and positive areas of the paper. Watercolors require so much more thought before you put the stroke down than other mediums tho. So I think the physical medium itself forces one to think and it's probably a healthy exercise that i'm going to do my next comic in watercolors.  it will bring me back to a balance for working in my other mediums i think.

Something good I've also been using as a comparison for what i've been doing besides my teachers in class is this:…
it's a reading of letters from the vincent van gogh. It's exceptionally good and I've been trying to get as many artists as i can listen to it. it really makes you think about the relevance of your own observations, techniques etc about the way you work. It's good to fall into your own pace and momentum for working, but i think once in awhile it's good to step back and think in perspective of the way you work.
I've been planning out my next comic. I hesitate to make a bad pun and call it a graphic novel, because literally, one facing side with be novel, and the other graphics.
If anyone remembers Neil Gaiman and Amano making a book together under the Sandman series, you'll know what i'm talking about.

I started out writing an anecdote of a story from about 4 years ago. Where the premise of the story rings true, most of the facts, as in who's who, location, etc are largely changed.

I have 30 pages of comics planned, and a little bit of rewriting to do on the story.
I have found a friend who is possibly willing to translate the story into Japanese, so it will be bilingual. I am not sure how well that will fare out, and most likely, it will be unnecessary, but maybe in the future, it will be something amusing to see in print.

The comic pages are completely planned out. Man, it took me a week to plan out 30 pages. I am slow O_o. I hope to have this completed by New Years, but as my proficiency test is coming during the first week of December, it makes me wonder.
For anyone who wants advice on the usage of Pastels, I'm going to talk a little bit about the composite of cheaper pastels.

I have a very basic set of pretty hard cheap chalky Pastels, a little known brand called Koss, that's manufactured in Korea (it's probably comparable to Loew Cornell, Alpha color or Sargent here -don't confuse this with the real Sargent pastels from the early 1900's). While I learned to pastel with these and learned to become relatively good at them,  I don't recommend these actually to learn with. They are possibly a little too hard for people to learn to begin with.

These are probably the hardest student grade soft pastels. While they are very cheap for the money, I think if you learn to draw with these, you don't really develop the more delicate and sensitive touch required to use the better brands like Sennelier and Schminke. Why is this important? Well pastels really can't be blended as well as say, watercolors, oils, or acrylics. So the only way you can achieve certain colors, is if you get them in pure pigmented form. the cheaper brand companies 1. either don't comply with these rules, and actually use really hazardous heavy metals to get some of these colors or 2. as i find in general, just don't make these colors. Some people like me, aren't that color-ccentric in there compositions, but i know a few Professional Pastels artists where the color is incredibly important, and if you know you're one of these people, I suggest starting with these next brand of pastels, Rembrandts.

Rembrandts, (Holland-made) are probably the lower end of the spectrum in terms of Professional grade. Ones lower than this probably are Holbein, Winsor Newton and Mungyo Gallery, in that order. Rembrandts relative to student grade pastels are incredibly soft and delicate. Versus Senneliers, Unisons, Schimickes, etc, however, they're actually pretty dense. You'll also find that Rembrandts are probably one of the few professional grade pastels that composite clays into their colors. Clays take away from the richness of the colors and I've noticed for my purposes actually make it harder to build up layers. They clays tend to adhere to the paper better, but in that way also fill in the paper texture a little too well and it makes it harder for the next layer to go on. You'll notice if you use the pure-pigment Pastel brands (ones that use strictly binder* and pigment) they you won't find as much of this problem.  I've heard differently from other pastel artists on this, but on the whole, I tend to be pretty heavy handed in my drawing (conditioned by using the hard cheaper pastels), so perhaps if you have a gentler touch, you might get away with it better. Rembrandts have become something of my highlight pastel.  they adhere so well over the harder Koss pastels I have, that I've managed to find a good balance.

Conte Pastels are probably the most perplexing pastel to most people. Those along with Nupastels and other really hard detailing pastels seem to take away from the point of using pastels altogether. My drawing teacher during freshman year of college basically ordered all of us to start out drawing with Contes. Which is ridiculous due to 1. the price (contes are incredibly expensive) 2. the hardness (Contes are made with a high contration of binder to pigment ratio). I think in the case of contes,while they are technically pastels, if you're going to draw ONLY with contes, they have  the worst blending out of all the pastels,  so you should think about them closer to a colored pencil than an actual pastel.  Contes and Nupastels are essentially made with the idea of using them as detailing (eyelashes, strong clear cut lines, etc) in conjunction with other pastels. My freshman teacher I guess expected us to kind of figure that out on our own, which is foolish and actually turned off a lot of people from pastels, people who would have otherwise been very good with pastels, but couldn't figure out how the pastels worked.

As for now, I'm looking to upgrade from the student grade pastels I've been working with. But since my way of drawing has grown such a dependance on these harder, cheaper pastels, I'm actually looking to the relatively new brand of pastels released by Winsor Newton. I would by Mungyos, actually since they's easier to find, but their spectrum is incredibly limited to 90 colors.  (Not very good purples, you'll realize the quality of pastel brands is very easily judged by the variety of purples in their colore spectrum.) Winsor Newtons appear to be slightly softer than Mungyos but have 200 colors, with a range of 10 Purples.

*Binders are essentially glue that keeps pigments together in mediums. A typical binder for cheaper grader pastels tends to be Arabic Gum.
I didn't believe it when i heard artists in the old times used to die from breathing in Pastel dust. Supposedly they developed this disease called Black lung, and it was from all the metal bits in the purples, blues, greens and cadmium red lining their lungs and they just affixated to death eventually.
Newer pastels don't use metals (usually).
But tonight i found myself coughing up physical pastel chunks.

So the lesson of the night! Pastels are dangerous, wear a mask, kids!
Yay! I finished this first chapter of Miracle! Woohoo! I'm also going to be a submission for the Tokyopop Rising Stars Contest!
Yay! Please look for it when the Rising Stars website is updated around January!
:heart: I love you guys for all your support!
Thank you to the hordes of people who came here after zeruch's nice write up.
I'm completely touched by the kind words.
Thank you so much!
Woo Hoo!

Today i just penciled the last page of my comic (which will probably remain a secret for awhile)
I 'm an odd ball and i pencil my pages basically from the center and work my way outwards. I have pages 1 and 2 to pencil and then i'm done! muahahah!

And then I can start working on my next comic!

Thanks for everyone's support!
OMG! 500 Hits! ::clings to becky:: you so kewl
Lately, I've been feeling like "I'm so in love, and not afraid to show it."
Of course, I'm talking about my comics and art. Every page, every stroke, it's like falling in love all over again, and it's better than the last time. I want everyone to see my pictures and be simply driven to the same madness I am when I look at them. It's self-centered to say so, but I'm absorbed and astounded by the worlds that reside in my own psyche. In creating art, I've found purpose to existing and I know where I belong in the world.  My dreams both awake and sleeping have been filled with so much creativity and brilliance, I wonder how anyone couldn't allow themselves to feel this way. I keep thinking "My god, how can people, how could i, ever go so long without this feeling of worth, this lust for life?
I firmly believe that if tommorrow the world were to end, I honestly feel like I've been spending the last moments alive doing exactly what I was supposed to do.

No regrets.